Create a LiveUSB with persistent storage

I have a 128GB Sandisc USB3.0. I put the Fedora 40 Workstation ISO onto it and used Etcher to make it bootable. However, when I go to boot, the only recognized storage size of the USB is 2.1GB. Why?

When you write a live image to usb the size is set to the size of the image.

You can use fedora media writer to restore the usb stick to it original size after you no longer need the live image.

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Can I install Fedora onto another USB so I can have the storage size on that?

My SSD currently has win11 on it and all my personal files so I would prefer not to format that.

My suggestion:

  1. use a small USB flash drive (4 to 8G) and write the image to that device.
  2. restore the SSD device as noted by Barry above.
  3. boot from the usb flash drive and you can install to the SSD if that is what you desire to do.
    You could alternatively use fdisk when booted into the live install media (instead of step 2) and wipe out the existing iso image by creating an empty partition table on that device then perform the installation. I would suggest that creating an empty gpt partition table would be most versatile.

Here’s the thing. I just want to be able to plug it in, boot from it and go. I want a live USB with all the storage so I can transport it like a mini PC (almost).

Is this possible.

(BTW I’m very new to linux so I do not know any commands or things like that but I do have tech knowledge)

What you are asking for is a LiveUSB with persistence.

There are tools like Rufus that can help you with that. Fedora Media Writer is not suited for that use case.

Yes it is possible.

  1. Write live-image to a USB stick.
  2. Boot that live-image
  3. Insert another USB stick or better an external SSD
  4. Use the live installer to install on the external SSD

I do this all the time to have exactly what you describer an external Fedora system with read-write and persistent storage.


This is exactly what I said above.

Once installed the ssd becomes a portable OS drive that would work on many systems.

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